Bishop of Corfu, Mr. Nektarios: “We should acquire the ascetical spirit of our Orthodox faith.”
On Sunday, March 24, 2019, his Eminence, the Bishop of Corfu, Mr. Nektarios did the Divine Liturgy in the Holy Church of All Saints in Corfu town.
In his preaching, the Bishop of Corfu referred to the celebrated Saint Gregory Palamas, who experienced and talked about both the Uncreated Light and the prayer, the “Lord Jesus Christ mercy me”, coming in contact with the Greek monk Varlaam of Calabria from Lower Italy, due to the Hesychastic dispute that had arisen at that time. The Uncreated Light is that Light, witnesses of which were made by the three preachers of the disciples during the Transfiguration of the Lord at Mount Tabor before the willful Passion. Saint Gregory Palamas claimed, after experiencing it, that the essence of the Triune God can not be understood. We know God through His actions that are essential, unrivaled. Even today Western Christianity can not accept this truth, and it continues to support the blasphemous view that God knows Himself in essence and is approached intently, resulting in the rejection of the Uncreated Grace.
But when one talks about the “Grace”, he automatically cancels out the possibility of homage to Christ, of Holiness. Apart from the fact that with the so-called “Grace” there are no Mysteries. With the help of the Lord, however, this blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was condemned by the later sessions, which rebuked the word of truth. Moreover, the Eminence pointed out that Saint Gregory Palamas described the three stages of the spiritual path of the believer, purification, illumination and therapeutics. This includes the mindless prayer that cleanses the heart and mind of the Christian and must be called uninterruptedly so that man continually communes with Christ, requesting at the same time by his Creator the forgiveness of his sins.
Μoreover, Mr. Nektarios, speaking today, stressed that unfortunately we in Orthodox Greece all these years have been alienated by the western humanist, rationalistic and materialist spirit that has transformed the man-made man into a homo economicus “, where life is spent on money and consumer goods. On the contrary, for the Orthodox East, human was and will continue to be ascetic, spiritual, and will struggle for the purification of his heart. This is precisely what the human of our time is seeking, the fullness of his spiritual gaps, and can not be given this fullness, not only by our Orthodox Church.
In conclusion, His Eminence, wished that Saint Gregory Palamas, through his embassies, to help us to acquire the ascetic spirit of our Orthodox faith so as to confront the secularized spirit of the West.